Ohio to allow medical marijuana growers to expand operations

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Ohio regulators will now allow medical marijuana growers to request an expansion of their cultivation operations, a move that could ease product shortages, boost sales and allow cultivators to better meet patient demand.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reported that permission to expand will be granted to growers who have maxed out their space and can prove they need more room to meet demand.

The growers also must be in good standing with regulators, including the Ohio Department of Commerce.

Ohio has 20 cultivators who are licensed for up to 25,000 square feet of canopy and 15 cultivators who can grow up to 3,000 square feet.

The new rules would allow licensees to expand to 75,000 square feet and 9,000 square feet, respectively.

Regulators have not yet issued details about how the growers can request expansion.

In September, the Ohio Board of Pharmacy initiated plans to more than double the number of dispensaries, adding 73 to the current 58.

The state’s program is also contending with restrictive patient-purchase limits and low patient participation, but more supply could help lower costs for consumers and increase overall sales.